Greek Cypriot fire fighters and civil defense volunteers flew to Greece on Wednesday to help battle blazes in that country, while a Turkish Cypriot team was also due in neighboring Turkey which has also extended a call for international assistance due to deadly wildfires.
According to the Greek Cypriot media, 20 fire fighters and 20 civil defense volunteers from the Republic of Cyprus departed Wednesday morning on a mission to join hundreds of fire fighters in Greece already battling wild fires in that country.
The crew with their turnout gear and two fire engines were loaded into a Hellenic Air Force C130, according to the Cyprus News Agency.
The Greek Cypriot crew with turnout gear and two fire engines were loaded into a Greek C130, while a Turkish Cypriot team was expected to depart later en route to Turkey
A massive wildfire in Athens’ northern suburbs destroyed houses and caused evacuations as it spread to communities in the area, including the Olympic Village.
It was not immediately clear where exactly the Greek Cypriot teams were heading, while reports said fire fighters in Greece had also tackled a blaze on the island of Rhodes, near the Turkish coast.
Turkey has also been battling fires in the last few days, recording numerous evacuations and at least 8 deaths as flames fanned by strong winds were coupled with scorching temperatures affecting many countries in the region.
According to media in the north, a Turkish Cypriot team was also expected to depart the island en route to Turkey, where crews would join local fire fighters in different parts to battle flames.
Additional reports said Ankara had been promised water-dropping planes from the European Union.
Athens had initially offered assistance to Turkey in the form of fire fighting aircraft, according to media reports, but the offer was rescinded due to Greek fires breaking out in the early week.